Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A new chair and a race

Abby's new wheel chair arrived on her birthday!  We were so thrilled.  She looks great in it and will be able to grow 4 times her current weight and still fit.  The frame is hot pink and her name is embroidered on the seat in the same color.  She is fully supported and able to sit properly for maximum use of her hands.

Children with CP need firm support so they feel safe and secure enough to reach out and use their hands to explore their environment.  If they feel insecure and begin using all of their energy to maintain a sitting position, they have nothing left to control their hands.   Add vision and hearing impairment to the mix and the need to feel secure is even more critical.  In Abby's case, she really struggles to maintain head control as well, so she needs the upper body support to keep her head up and for use of her hands.  The chair comes with a tray which I love!  It helps keep her hands close to midline and we can put toys for her to feel while she is sitting for long periods of time.

The only bummer... an extra 40 lbs!  The chair is fairly heavy and awkward to lift, I am not able to do it easily.  Getting the chair into our van has become a major challenge.  But my savvy and intelligent husband has solved the problem and is (as I type) working to install a mechanical lift in the rear of our minivan.  The lift will (hopefully) grab the chair and do all the work of hoisting it into the air... all I have to do is guide it into place.  This solution should work for several more years, until we either need a better one due to Abby's growing size, or until we get a different vehicle.

A few weekends ago Patrick took part in a triathlon (Frantic Frog) with some friends.  It's become a yearly tradition to raise funds and awareness for adoption.  Lots of folks from church came out to race or cheer, all wearing the "I love adoption" t-shirts made for this years' event.

He was on a team of three, and did the swimming part! (one ran and one biked)  He did great and came in 14th out of over 600 people.  Whoo hoo!  His team ranked 3rd in the mixed relay group.  We were all very proud of Daddy!

Josiah is ready to race now.  He wants us to draw numbers on him almost daily to prepare for his 'race'... just like Dad.


Keri said...

Yay, for Abby's cool chair. I love her name on the seat. :)

gracie :) said...

I love the new chair! She looks so well supported in it...and it makes her look so grown up. Hope the lift will be everything you need it to be right now!

And Happy Birthday to you!! :)

mmedlen said...

Great post! So glad to see Abby's chair and the lift your wonderful husband has made for the van. I know that'll be a huge help. The photo of all of our friends from KLCF sure made me miss everyone. Looks like y'all had a great time.

And yes, check your e-mail for your happy birthday wish from us! We love and appreciate you!